Nothing signifies summer more than a lush, vibrant garden overflowing with vegetables, berries and flowers...
Nothing signifies summer more than a lush, vibrant garden overflowing with vegetables, berries and flowers. As a child I remember spending countless hours in gardens at our family home, friend's and grandparents' homes. It really did not matter, I just loved the fresh summer aromas, colors, hunting for bugs and most of all, the incredible fresh-picked fruits and veggies especially T-O-M-A-T-O-E-S.
There is magic in plucking a juicy, red tomato from the vine and pinching a bunch of sweet basil leaves to make the most basic yet extraordinarily delicious sandwich. And we all know summer produce picked at its peak makes for the most mouthwatering dishes, so there is no wonder why many wineries have culinary gardens usually tended by their estate chefs. As an adult, I have been fortunate to discover some of these treasures where I can blend indulging in my passion for wine all while thrilling my inner child with the sensory overload of a garden bursting with natures most delicious gifts. Just the hint of "green" fragrance from a tomato vine instantly transports me to those fond moments of my youth. It's why today I have plenty of potted tomatoes and truly enjoy tending them, today.
The culinary garden at J Vineyards & Winery is a marvel and the source of inspiration of Chef Carl Shelton's heavenly creations for the Bubble Room five-course tasting menu. If you like your gardens with more KA-POW, such as chickens, sheep, goats, bee hives, and an ever-rotating seasonal produce crop all part of the Theater of Nature at De Loach Vineyards is a definite must and a great place to bring the youngest members of your family. As they say an apple orchard is the perfect place to spend a day and Edio Vineyards at Delfino Farms provides a wonderful destination to enjoy a wine tasting experience tucked into their family's apple farm and in the fall you must get one of their famous Walkin' Pies from Joan's Apple Bakery located onsite.
Whether you spend an the afternoon or the entire weekend garden hopping through wine country, you'll be glad you did!
The Vineyard Vixen